Football

Ancelotti Says Liverpool Made 'Right Choice' In Picking Klopp Over Him In 2015

Ancelotti Says Liverpool Made 'Right Choice' In Picking Klopp Over Him In 2015

Jurgen Klopp and Carlo Ancelotti will face off in a Merseyside Derby for the first time tomorrow afternoon, but things could have been very different for both men had Liverpool owners FSG made a different decision back in 2015.

Liverpool were on the search for a new manager after the departure of Brendan Rodgers, with both Klopp and Ancelotti identified as potential targets. The Italian expressed an interest in the position and even spoke to the club, but the Americans ultimately decided that the former Dortmund boss was their man.

Just over four years on, and with a Champions League triumph in tow, it is safe to say they made the right decision.

That is an opinion shared by Ancelotti, who yesterday said that Liverpool made the right choice in overlooking him in favour of Klopp in 2015.

It was after (he left) Real Madrid, I had a chat with the owner.

They were looking for a new manager but I think they made a right choice with Jurgen. He is doing fantastic work at Liverpool, so well done.

Despite being beaten out by him for the Liverpool job, Ancelotti said he and Klopp have a great relationship off the pitch. They are also familiar with each other on it, with Liverpool having played Napoli four times in the Champions League over the past two seasons. They also met in a friendly in Dublin in 2018, and in America last summer.

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Napoli have actually coped with Liverpool as well as any other side, suffering only one defeat and coming away with two wins in their four competitive meetings. Everton fans will be hoping Ancelotti can carry that form into tomorrow's clash at Anfield, a ground they have not won at since 1999.

Their manager is hopeful of the same:

Jurgen is my friend, we have a good relationship and I had the luck to beat him last season as well, although they won the competition.

At Napoli it was the same, we were able to do a great performance because to beat Liverpool you have to do a great performance, a normal performance is not enough.

Everything has to be perfect. You must work hard, sacrifice, show intensity - to beat them your game has to be complete.

You cannot defend for 90 minutes and we do not want to defend for 90 minutes. We want to have the possibility to play our football.

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Gary Connaughton

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